Laveen, AZ asked in Native American Law for Arizona

Q: Why doesn't icwa apply to tribal court proceedings?

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1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Native American Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) is a federal law designed to protect the rights and interests of Native American children in child custody proceedings. While ICWA sets guidelines and requirements for state court proceedings involving Native American children, it generally does not apply to tribal court proceedings. Tribal courts have their own legal systems and processes, which operate independently from state courts. They may have their own laws and regulations that govern child custody matters within their respective tribes. However, it's important to note that tribes often incorporate principles and standards from ICWA into their own child welfare systems to ensure the well-being and cultural preservation of Native American children.

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